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Wave Cave, AZPrint Full | Basic
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Description 36 Triplogs 0 Topics
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Mine
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 Superstitions SW
Statistics
Difficulty 2.5    Route Finding
Distance Round Trip 3.35 miles
Trailhead Elevation 2,204 feet
Elevation Gain 977 feet
Avg Time Round Trip 2.5 hours
Kokopelli Seeds 8.24
Interest Off Trail Hiking
David N Letlet
Descriptions 1
Routes 0
Photos 15
Trips 1 map ( 3 miles )
Age 51
Location Mesa, AZ
Photos
Rated Viewed All Mine Friends
2  2014-02-03 Mike Fels
10  2014-01-04 wallyfrack
4  2013-12-31 HikerGirl_inAZ
19  2013-12-14 bkraay
5  2013-12-08 josetoe5
16  2013-11-28 Nightstalker
19  2013-11-23 Hippy
6  2013-10-22 smojo
14  2013-10-10
 West Boulder Saddle
 Hippy
14  2013-04-07 BiFrost
5  2013-04-07 slowandsteady
12  2013-03-05 gummo
Page 1,  2
Large Profile
Trailhead Forecast
Historical Weather
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Forest Tonto
Wilderness Superstition
Backpack - Possible - Not Popular
Seasons - Late Autumn
Route
 
Alternative Routes
 
Water
Nearby Hikes Area Water Sources
direct air miles away to trailhead
0.0  Robbers Roost Canyon - Tonto NF
0.0  Dacite Mesa
0.0  Superstition Peak 5057 - Carney
0.0  Three Sisters
0.0  W Boulder Cyn to Willow Springs
0.0  West Boulder Canyon
[ View More! ]
Culture
     Aircraft
     Cartwheel
     Dacite Tide
     Snoozing Home
Space
Fauna
     Common Tree Lizard
     Desert Tortoise
     Leaf-footed Bug
     Orb-Weaver Spider
     Ornate Tree Lizard
     Rock Wren
     Teva
     Turkey Vulture
     Western Diamondback Rattlesnak
     Western Patch-nosed snake
Space
Flora
     Hedgehog Cactus
     Mexican Gold Poppy
     Pincushion Cactus
     Saguaro
Space

Superstition Pipeline
by David N Letlet

Mobile Version
Dubbed the "Wave Cave" by Joe Bartels in 2002.

Overview: If you are looking for a departure from the usual Peralta/Fremont Saddle, Bluff Springs, or West Boulder Saddle routine, this may be the hike for you. Having said that, there is bushwhacking, boulder-hopping, confusing cairns going the wrong way, NO signage, steep, slippery inclines/descents, loose dirt/gravel, a great cave, and some of the best scenery the Superstition Mountains have to offer. Wonderful solitude. Relaxing day. This is also a great route up to the Ridgeline. Still interested? Read on.

This is a shorter hike out near Peralta. 4.25 miles, at best, but it is a tough little route. It isn't off trail, but it is a very faint trail (likely dating to the 50's-60's) that we have been quietly resurrecting over the last year. We recommend long sleeves/pants (and perhaps gloves) due to some catclaw, and the generally overgrown nature of the "trail" in spots. As such, snakes (and other critters), may be present, and can be hard to spot due to the vegetation. In addition, a recent presence of bees have been noted at the cave (similar to those found at Wind Cave at Usery Mountain Regional Park). Stay away from them, and you should be fine, but if they are a concern for you, this may not be your hike. Many might find walking sticks/poles helpful on this hike, though they are not a necessity.

Hike: Begin this hike from the Carney Springs Trailhead and proceed in a northwesterly direction along the old road bed for about a mile to a fence line that marks the Superstition Wilderness. Look ahead of you and to the right, and pass through the gate into the Wilderness area. Continue up the trail maybe a quarter mile or so and take the faintly marked trail to the left just the other side of the old palo verde tree ( Ironwood ). This spot sometimes has a cairn at it, and usually has some rocks laid across the entrance to it. There is an obvious trail at this junction to the left, but it quickly becomes a bit less distinct as you travel it. Just keep your eyes out for the cairns as you go, and continue to follow a generally west-northwest direction as you climb ever so gently in a diagonal direction toward a deep wash which shall become evident upon reaching it in a half mile or so. At the wash, descend carefully into it along one of the two paths in the area, and proceed in a northerly direction up the wash for some distance (just a couple tenths of a mile) until you see a rather pointy large boulder to the left of the wash, at which time you should see the cairns taking you out of the wash to the left. At this point, the real climbing begins. However, it is brief, as you will reach the cave within 5-10 minutes, as you steadily make your way up the embankment on a rather remarkably clear trail considering the route so far.

The cave will be visible to you at various points along the route, including a clear view from the trailhead itself. Keep an eye out as you travel towards it, and you should have no issues reaching it first time out. At the cave, you will find a welcome respite from the climb in the confines of a large deep opening cut into the rock over time, that provides ample shade and delightfully cooler temperatures during your visit. Some evidence of man in the form of spray painted graffiti marks the walls of the cave in some spots. There is a marvelous wave shaped rock jutting out of the floor of the cave, that lends itself to great photo opportunities for those interested. Travel back around and in front of the cave and to the west 50 feet or so, and you will find a smaller "guest house" cave next to this one. Each cave provides a great spot to enjoy lunch, and overlook the valley far below to the south. Return the same way, or continue up the wash to the left to reach the Ridgeline Trail across the Superstitions to the west, or turn to the right (east) to make a loop hike coming down at West Boulder Saddle or continuing on to Robber's Roost and Fremont Saddle (or ever Cave Trail, if you wish) to add distance, and adventure to this wonderful hike.

Gate Policy: If a gate is closed upon arrival, leave it closed after you go through. If it is open, leave it open. Leaving a closed gate open may put cattle in danger. Closing an open gate may cut them off from water. Please be respectful, leave gates as found.

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    Directions Preferred Months Jan Feb Nov Dec
    Water / Source:No
    Sunrise6:42am Sunset5:36pm
    Road / VehicleFR / Jeep Road -Car possible when dry
    Fees / Permit
    AZ State Land Recreational Permits are available for an individual ($15.00), or a family limited to two adults and children under the age of 14 ($20.00). Permits are valid for one year from the date of purchase. Exceptions to this requirement are licensed hunters actively pursuing game in season and certain archaeological activities permitted by the Arizona State Museum. Recreation under this permit is limited to hiking, horseback riding, picnics, bicycling, photography, sightseeing, bird watching, and camping. Permits can be obtained through the mail by calling 602-364-ASLD(2753) or by visiting the Land Department office in Phoenix.




    Land Parcel Map

    Forest
    Tonto Pass is a forest wide permit for recreational sites and campgrounds. Typically not for trailheads.

    Directions
    Print Version
    To Carney Spring Trailhead
    7.6 miles east of the junction Idaho Rd / US-60. Turn Left on to FS77 which is Peralta Road. Follow FS77 5.6 miles to a left and up turnoff. Continue 0.6 miles to Carney Spring Trailhead.

    This trailhead is not very well marked. Lost Goldmine Trailhead is 0.8 miles further. Peralta is 1.3 miles further and has restrooms without running water.

    From PHX (I-10 & AZ-51) 46.3 mi - about 1 hour 6 mins
    From TUC (Jct 1-10 & Grant) 95.8 mi - about 2 hours 12 mins
    From FLG (Jct I-17 & I-40) 191 mi - about 3 hours 10 mins
    Login for Mapped Driving Directions
    WARNING! Hiking and outdoor related sports can be dangerous. Be responsible and prepare for the trip. Study the area you are entering and plan accordingly. Dress for the current and unexpected weather changes. Take plenty of water. Never go alone. Make an itinerary with your plan(s), route(s), destination(s) and expected return time. Give your itinerary to trusted family and/or friends.
    page created by David N Letlet on Mar 15 2012 5:53 pm

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